A solid first half and an on-form Jake Odum just weren’t enough: “You don’t win a game in the first 20 minutes,” said a disappointed Head Coach Doug Spradley after s.Oliver Würzburg were beaten 75:98 by ratiopharm ulm on Wednesday. The hosts won their 14th game in succession and that took them to the top of the easyCredit German Basketball League. Top scorers were Jake Odum with 29 and Ulm’s Raymar Morgan with 24 points.
Spradley had to do without Center Krešimir Loncar and Ulm’s fine playmaker Per Günther was also absent – but his excellent replacement Braydon Hobbs scored 16 points and made 14 assists. It was Hobbs who sunk his first 3-pointer to take Ulm to their first 10+ points lead in the game in the 4th minute (12:2). Ulm had the better start, but almost none of Würzburg’s attempts dropped through the hoop during the first seven minutes. In the 7th minute, Ulm were already 21:7 ahead, but Max Ugrai scored with a distance throw and two free throws to reduce the deficit to 21:12. By the end of the first quarter, Würzburg had reduced Ulm’s lead to seven points (28:21) and they really turned up the heat in the second quarter, starting with a 9:0 run – Marshawn Powell threw a 3-pointer in the 13th minute to make it 28:30 – the first time the guests from Würzburg had led in the game – and they extended that lead as well, leading by 10 points in the 17th minute (33:43) after a 36:12 within a 10-minute period. Jake Odum scored fifteen of the 29 Würzburg points in the second quarter, scoring three 3-pointers. Shortly before the break, the hosts got into the mix again and a long throw by Chris Babb made it 45:50 right on the siren. “I was very happy with our first half – our team showed its true potential. But in the second half, Ulm showed us why they still haven’t lost a game in the league,” said Doug Spradley.
The hosts started the second half aggressively in defense, allowing Würzburg to score only 25 points until the game ended. Fifteen Würzburg turnovers – nine of them in the third quarter – certainly didn’t help Würzburg’s chances and a 3-pointer by Taylor Brown and a layup by Braydon Hobbs took the score to 50:50 after 22 minutes. 4 minutes later the game was still tightly contested – Maurice Stuckey’s long-distance throw made it 61:58, but once again Ulm had most of the pressure and the score was 72:62 at the end of the third quarter. The ten-point lead was still on the board after 35 minutes, until Ulm had a 12:0 run to make it 92:70. The youngster Georg Voigtmann made his first appearance in the easyCredit German Basketball League towards the end of the game and the former Ulmer Sebastian Betz scored a 3-pointer against his old team in his first appearance as a Würzburg player. And that was that… final siren, final score 98:75 and Ulm still unbeaten.
The s.Oliver Würzburg team now have a home game against BG Göttingen on the 26th of December, tip-off is 3:30pm. The first round of the league ends for Würzburg with their longest away trip of the year on December 29, when they visit the Eisbären in Bremerhaven on the North Sea.